When bands become their own tribute bands
It’s a mess. Despite a rather large anti-Tate/Pro-Wilson bias, this article here does a decent job of detailing the twists and turns of the band’s craziness. What I find most interesting about the split (other than how much the whole thing resembles a divorce – and considering one of the band members married and then quickly divorced Geoff Tate’s daughter, that couldn’t have helped band dynamics) were the competing visions. In essence (and despite the fact both versions of the band are releasing new albums), Geoff Tate wanted to keep recording and playing new music, and the rest of the band rather explicitly stated they preferred to play songs from the first five albums (their most popular ones, and their most “metal” ones). In essence, the debate was over progressing musically or else becoming your own cover/tribute band.
It seems like that step is inevitable. It seems very few artists have the longevity to keep releasing new music that sells well their entire careers. Most bands, at some point, start playing their own oldies (even if they may throw in a new tune here or there – I saw America in concert once, and in the two hour concert, they played a total of two songs that were “new-ish” and the rest were their oldest and greatest hits).
I have no real insight on this topic. I just found it somewhat interesting. It’ll be interesting to see which version of the band actually prevails in court over the legal right to the name.